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Hello,

I am new to this forum. My daughter is 10 years old and has vocal and motor tics and ADHD (inattentive type). We have her on a bunch of different supplements and vitamins and I am noticing a difference in her ADHD symptoms. She is more focused, less day dreamy and staying on task better. However, her tics are still bad. She is getting very upset about them. I believe that candy etc impacts her ADHD a lot, so I am sure it must impact her tics as well. I have tried eliminating dairy with minimal results. My question is - is there a book or a list of dyes/ sweeteners etc etc to follow to do a total diet overhaul. I don't even know where to start, and would love to follow some sort of plan or book.

I am feeling so ovewhelmed by it all. She has hit an age where it is all becoming apparant to her, so I am not just worried about her tics and adhd, but I am worried now about how she is reacting and dealing with it all.

 

Thanks!

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Hello Mythree,

 

I'm new to all this, too. What I started with was Sheila's book (you'll see it referenced on this site). When it arrived, I read all day (my family was away), and found it to be a very rich resourse on all things tic related, including diet issues. Haven't gotten back to it since, because we've been so busy figuring things out day by day, but it's never far from reach.

 

I went to our first visit with an environmental medicine doctor yesterday (am about to post on that experience), and he recommended (highly) an elimination / challenge diet, and gave us a handout on how to do it.

 

Wishing positive things for you and your daughter!!

 

Cj60

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hi and welcome

 

yes, Sheila's book is an excellent resource

http://www.latitudes.org/book.html

 

we have found that eliminating everything that has any form of artificial chemical additive in it is the best. In the beginning it was hard as so much of what we used had bad stuff in it, but there are many alternatives, and also one can make so much oneself. And it sure is worth it!!

 

in terms of actual food groups, if you dont see any positive results after about 2 weeks of being off eg dairy then you can reintroduce it and see if there is any increase in the tics again.

 

I have a link in my signature below on my son's treatment protocol and you will also see a thread at the very top of this forum titled Helpful Threads where there is more info

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Thank you both for your replies. I am happy to get the name of the book - it'll give me somewhere to start now. It is so nice to find a website like this. I don't know anyone that really understands what it is like to have a child with tourette's. It is nice to 'meet' others going through the same challenges here. I am so desperate to help my daughter - so I will check out the information you gave me.

Thanks!

Lisa

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Hi mythree. I definately agree about Sheila Rogers book, it is now my encyclopedia of info. and I regularly come back to it in stressful times. An elimination diet although completely overwhelming at times has been a huge step forward in our fight to decrease our ds9 chronic vocal tics. We started by removing all artificial colours, flavours, preservatives. Hope you enjoy baking because that will make your life so much easier :) Our son showed great progress once we removed pretty much anything chemically modified etc. We then began by removing the main culprits wheat and dairy. There are some great substitutes now it is just a matter of learning how to work with them. It is a big job but the pay out can be quite impowering! I found doing a total elimination too much immediately for our ds, so we worked our way into it. Detailed food notes help initially and trust your gut, if you think something could be a trigger as healthy as it may seem, you could still be right! Good luck and if you need help tweaking recipes etc. dont hesitate to ask! Oh and a quick side note remember it is not always food, we found going to natural cleaners and household products even soap, laundry and dishwasher detergents and shampoo seemed to eliminate his severity. Artificial and chemical anything seem to be hard on his system.

 

Best of luck! Megan

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Thanks Megan!

I have ordered the book and I am looking forward to it arriving. The doctor we are seeing - suggested eliminating all dairy first. Which I planned on doing again starting Monday. (We did it once about a month ago - and did it strictly for two weeks. That is what he suggested. Then we added dairy back in. I really didn't see any change. But, now I am thinking I should have done it longer. She is still totally off of milk, yogurt and cheese, but I haven't been checking other food for casein. I was planning on Monday to go totally dairy free and try it again. Would you suggest that - or do you think the artificial colours etc is the way to go first?

We have always been concerned about sugar or candy or perhaps it is the dye's etc in the candy. This has been for about 6 years we have really had to restrict how much she has, for if she eats a packet of skittles etc without much in her tummy, we will really notice a difference behaviour wise - much more spacey, out of it, will get weepy, sometimes a bit more aggressive and often will actually soil her pants. Candy is easier to cut out - but I guess I need to look at cutting out all artificial colours/additives etc. That seems so overwhelming to me - for I dont' really know how to identify them all. She doesn't eat junk food, but i have heard that even oranges have colours added to their skin to make them more orange. So it is all the hidden colours etc that overwhelms me.

 

Do you have your son on supplements at all?

Thanks for your help. I really appreciate it.

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[quote name='mythree'

 

I think from our experience, starting with artificials and preservatives can only be a positive. Our ds gets wired from colours etc. The sugars seem secondary although still a good idea to avoid corn syrup, fructose/glucose etc. We stick with raw cane sugar or stevia, maple syrup, honey as much as possible. 100% fruit juices with no added sugars are a great start, I just water them down. As far as what to avoid for us big ones were tartrazine (yellow food dye), red dyes, MSG, actually make it easy on yourself if its not natural avoid it! This for us was a great jumping off point. It gets you really reading labels and getting back to the simpler the better. Next we eliminated wheat and most gluten, he still has higher quality oatmeal but we watch how much. It you dont think wheat is an issue sprouted grains are a better choice than refined wheat. The nice thing is most gluten free products are also free of artificial colours, flavours and preservatives so you get the most bang for your buck. It is scary to start but with time it does become easier and you dont need to always second guess your choices. Our whole families food choices have changed even my younger kids who dont yet show any signs of tics. The trick is to still keep things that feel like treats on hand. There are some great Rice IceCreams or Soy if it's not a problem ( I personally avoid too much Soy as it can have it's own issues). There are gluten free icecream cones! Your grocery bill may be shocking for a while but again as time goes on you adapt. I would say milk and wheat are two major players worth eliminating for a time. Also be aware that sometimes when you remove the offending food tics may worsen for a while before they get better so give it some time, at least a few weeks if not 4-6 weeks. My ds seemed to need about a week for his body to cleanse itself from coming off wheat, it really caught me off guard at first. I do have him on Omega 3, just stopped supplement acidophilus in favour of yogurt or kefir thanks to others advice as his tics seemed to increase drastically with the powder. He takes Vitamin D, just started Natural calm magnesium (will keep you posted) and should get him back on a good multi, his had corn syrup solids (didnt realize) and was making him antsy and tics increased. I am still finding my away around what supplements are best for him, it's trial and error and we have not done any testing that requires needles, (one of his extreme anxieties).

I know this feels huge but trust me even if you only find one or two triggers it is worth it and in the process you are taking back some of the power. This "thing" just takes over the whole family if you let it, we have been 3 years now, and the best move we made was to start paying close attention to what our whole family was consuming, breathing etc. At least it gives you something to do, cause not doing drove me crazy! I wish you all the best and much patience and strength for the weeks, years ahead..

 

Megan

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  • 2 weeks later...

Also, if your child has multiple allergies or sensitivites, only eliminating dairy may not be enough to be able to see a difference. My ds is intolerant to dairy, wheat, citrus, egg, corn & soy (& candida!). We found those thru ELISA testing by our DAN doctor, but there are probably more. At this point, I can see that he tics more when he eats those foods, but eliminating them has not been enough to eliminate his tics. So unfortunately, if your child has several or many triggers, it is a little bit more difficult.

 

BTW, can anyone tell me what shampoo they are using? We are trying to find one with a price tag we can live with, that still cleans our hair well, & it has not been easy! I just spent $10 on a bottle of Everday Shea that was on sale at Whole Foods, & it leaves my ds's hair looking greasy. Now we will have to use it as a liquid soap instead. :P

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We have always been concerned about sugar or candy or perhaps it is the dye's etc in the candy. This has been for about 6 years we have really had to restrict how much she has, for if she eats a packet of skittles etc without much in her tummy, we will really notice a difference behaviour wise - much more spacey, out of it, will get weepy, sometimes a bit more aggressive and often will actually soil her pants. Candy is easier to cut out - but I guess I need to look at cutting out all artificial colours/additives etc.

 

 

FWIW.....I used to notice significantly increased tic-ing after candy ......turned out my son had allergies to many things in many candies --e.g., chocolate, milk...---but the BIGGEST allergy he had was to CORN---> and Corn SWEETENERS (e.g. "high fructose corn syrup" and similar deritives) etc is used in almost EVERYTHING (except higher priced "natural foods" that deliberately avoid it) because it is less expensive for the company.......

 

Anyhow...since you've identified candy for sure......my thought would be to consider CORN as well, and do an elimination of all corn products for 5 days at least...you could add dyes to the elimination part if you wanted, but when you add them back to look for symptoms.....only add back one at a time....e.g., give it at least 3 days of returning one of them to the diet before returning the other one, just in case it's only one thing and not the other, you can differentiate....

 

BEST WISHES :-) !!

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